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Played
September 28, 2013 12:00 PM EDT
Estadio de los Juegos Mediterráneos — Almería
Referee:‬ Miguel Ayza‎
Attendance:‬ 11975‎
 
 
Lionel Messi 21′
 
Adriano 56′
   
 
 

Player Ratings: Almeria 0-2 Barcelona

Goal rates the players as a confident Blaugrana win over Francisco's side was marred by an injury to Lionel Messi after he opened the scoring.

By Charlie Scott

  • Esteban
    2
    4
    3.00

    Esteban

    Saved well from Iniesta before being beaten by Messi's opener and could do little about Adriano's close-range finish which made it 2-0.

  • Hernán Darío Pellerano
    1
    2
    2.50

    Hernán Darío Pellerano

    The experienced Argentine was strong in the air but not so when the ball was on the floor. He failed to get close enough to Pedro when Messi scored in the 21st minute, but seemed to learn his lesson as he improved after that.

  • Ángel Trujillo
    1
    2
    3.00

    Ángel Trujillo

    Missed a couple of tackles in dangerous positions on Alexis and Pedro and was fortunate that his goalkeeper Esteban was able to mop up his mistakes.

  • Christian
    1
    2
    3.00

    Christian

    Will have been relieved to see the back of Messi after the Argentine brushed past him in the build-up to Barca's first goal. He also struggled against Alexis' considerable pace.

  • Nélson
    2
    2
    3.50

    Nélson

    The Portuguese full-back performed well apart from when he was beaten by Fabregas in the 56th minute, when the former Arsenal man set up Adriano for Barca's second.

  • Tébar
    1
    2
    2.50

    Tébar

    It is always going to be difficult playing against Barcelona's midfield, and he unsurprisingly struggled against Iniesta, Xavi and Busquets. He was not helped by the unpredictable play of Verza alongside him though.

  • Verza
    1
    3
    2.50

    Verza

    Was rash in the challenge, and wayward with his distribution. The midfielder frequently gave away free kicks which disrupted any rhythm that Almeria did create during the game.

  • Aleix Vidal
    2
    2
    3.50

    Aleix Vidal

    Impressed on the left-hand side for Almeria before being replaced by Dubarbier after the break. He worked hard defensively and showed a good turn of pace to dribble past Alves and Pique on more than one occasion.

  • Suso
    5
    3
    2.50

    Suso

    On loan from Liverpool, the young Spaniard was one of Almeria's better performers, mixing a dose of flair with intelligent passing. Faded slightly after the break.

  • Soriano
    3
    2
    3.00

    Soriano

    The robust attacker proved a nuisance of himself during his hour on the pitch, working hard and challenging for every ball in the air.

  • Rodri
    1
    3
    2.50

    Rodri

    Was guilty of wasting Almeria's best chance in front of goal when he shot straight at Valdes in the first half. Full of running but saw little of the ball, particularly after the break.

Substitutions

  • Sebastian Dubarbier
    1
    2
    2.50

    Sebastian Dubarbier

    The Argentine filled in at left-back after Vidal was subbed off in the second half but did little of note during his time on the pitch.

  • Ramon Azeez
    1
    2
    3.00

    Ramon Azeez

    Replaced Soriano in the second half and looked bright on the left-hand side.

  • Hélder Barbosa
    1
    2

    Hélder Barbosa

    Brought on late in the game and did not see much of the ball in the closing stages.

  • Víctor Valdés
    14
    1
    3.00

    Víctor Valdés

    Commanded his area well throughout as the hosts flung set pieces into the box, and also pulled off a smart stop from Rodri shortly before half-time.

  • Piqué
    13
    5
    3.00

    Piqué

    Did not enjoy having to deal with Suso's trickery, with the on-loan Liverpool attacker impressing for Almeria. He was strong in the air throughout though.

  • Bartra
    24
    2
    3.50

    Bartra

    Produced a decent performance at the heart of Barca's defence. Recovered well to put in a fine last-ditch tackle on Vidal on the penalty spot in the 40th minute after he had been beaten too easily by the full-back.

  • Adriano
    21
    1
    4.00

    Adriano Top of the Match

    One of many Blaugrana players who will not be sorry to see the back of Suso. His defending was haphazard at times but he made up for that with some great play going forward. Scored Barcelona's second from close range.

  • Daniel Alves
    10
    3
    3.00

    Daniel Alves

    The Brazilian had a surprisingly quiet game down the right-hand side, perhaps in part due to the departure of Messi through injury. The South American pair usually work so well together, and Alves looked out of sorts after the Argentine's withdrawal.

  • Cesc Fàbregas
    18
    4
    3.00

    Cesc Fàbregas

    Switched to a false nine role following Messi's injury and impressed in that position. His movement and first touch kept him a step ahead of Almeria's defenders and he showed good awareness to set up Adriano for Barca's second.

  • Andrés Iniesta Luján
    15
    2
    3.00

    Andrés Iniesta Luján

    Forced Esteban into making a great save early on with a rasping effort from 18 yards and provided some breathtaking pieces of skill to deceive the likes of Pellerano and Trujillo over the course of the game.

  • Busquets
    16
    3
    3.50

    Busquets

    You know exactly what you are going to get with Busquets, and he excelled again in this game with his simple one and two-touch passing.

  • Pedro
    11
    11
    2.00

    Pedro Flop of the Match

    Teed up Messi for his stunning opening goal, but that proved to be his only key contribution during the match. Fortunate to stay on for the full 90 minutes.

  • Alexis Sánchez
    16
    3
    3.50

    Alexis Sánchez

    Exploited Almeria's lack of pace in defence, with Fernandez in particular falling victim to that. Showed a heavy touch on a couple of occasions which meant he was unable to test Esteban in the Almeria goal.

  • Lionel Messi
    38
    5
    3.50

    Lionel Messi

    Scored a fantastic goal to put Barcelona ahead after cutting in from the right and lashing a shot past Esteban, but had his night ended prematurely through injury shortly after.

Substitutions

  • Xavi
    15
    3
    3.00

    Xavi

    Replaced the injured Messi in the 28th minute and produced a typically composed and intelligent performance in midfield.

  • Tello
    8
    5

    Tello

    Brought on late on and had little chance to leave his mark on the game.

Results
 
Player Ratings
Tournament
Position
Ranking
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Cristiano Ronaldo Cristiano Ronaldo
Striker
Real Madrid
28 6
Diego Costa Diego Costa
Striker
Atlético de Madrid
26 4
Lionel Messi Lionel Messi
Striker
Barcelona
25 6
Karim Benzema Karim Benzema
Striker
Real Madrid
17 0
Alexis Sánchez Alexis Sánchez
Striker
Barcelona
17 0